Meeting Jairus

By Jean Boonstra

Have you ever imagined what it would have felt and looked like to stand with Jairus as Jesus healed his daughter?

About the Author

Jean Boonstra is the Associate Speaker for the Voice of Prophecy. She is the author of several books, including eight in the Adventist Girl series.

View more posts by Jean Boonstra

A few years ago, Dr. Dick Stenbakken, retired Chaplain Colonel, was a speaker at an event Shawn and I were hosting. I knew a little about Dick and his ministry, and when he asked if our oldest daughter could participate in his presenation, I was happy to ask her. Natalie was delighted to be Jairus' daughter, and Dick brought her a costume and helped her choose a song to sing at the close of his message.

The afternoon of the presentation, Dick stood before the congregation transformed. He was dressed in a period costume—one I learned he'd sewn himself—and he did more than tell Jairus' story. It was almost as if Jairus himself walked right out of the pages of the Bible. It was a moving experience to hear the story from Jairus' perspective and to feel as if we each were right there with the man as his little daughter was made well again. I was moved to tears as I experienced the story of Jairus as I never had before. 

This was my first experience with what is Dr. Stenbakken's specialty—first-person narrative preaching. He has portrayed more than 70 Bible characters, but he sort of stumbled into this form of preaching by accident!

Recently, I invited Dick to our Loveland studios to talk about his ministry. Our interview is below, and I invite you to join us for a few minutes to hear more about this unique form of preaching and how it not only has transformed the hearers, but the preacher as well!